This wonderful novel spans generations and combines the power of 12 startling voices to share the experiences of British women of color. Mainly set in London we hear the story of a proud black lesbian playwright, her sassy super-feminist daughter and a sexually fluid millennial, just to name a couple.
Girl, Serpent, Thorn has a wonderful fairy-tale feel, combining Persian mythology with elements of Sleeping Beauty, to give us the story of a girl who is poisonous to the touch as she is determined to find her place in the magical world around her.
Paris, 1828. The city reels from the failed Revolution. The Royal Court rules the city by day and nine criminal guilds rule the streets at night. When Nina Thenardier’s money-hungry father sells her beloved sister to the Tiger, the brutish Lord of the Guild of Flesh, Nina swears to do all she can to free Azelma from his clutches.
If I Had Your Face is an amazing window into the lives of the girls and women living in Seoul. I fell in love with the characters, for all their quirks, ambitions and eccentricities, and learnt so much about South Korean culture.
Brave, quirky and boldly funny, Pizza Girl is the story of an 18 year-old pregnant pizza delivery girl as she struggles with grief, her dysfunctional family, teen pregnancy – oh! and the fact that she has become obsessed with one of her customers.
On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous – I don’t think anybody would be questioning Vuong’s status as a T. S. Eliot prize-winning poet after reading this – this epistolary novel flows like poetry and Vuong succeeds in conjuring up beauty in rage and suffering.
The New Wilderness – The New Wilderness wasn’t quite I was expecting. I thought it would be a hard-edged survival, woven with Station Eleven-style dystopia, but it is in fact a rather calm story, with a steady pace. Yes, it is about survival and yes, it is a dystopia, but not the sort that makes you reel in shock or puts you on the edge of your seat.
The Girl With The Louding Voice – 14-year old Adunni is the star of the show in this book and Daré has truly achieved a wonderfully compelling character with a powerful voice.
10 Minutes and 38 Seconds in This Strange World – Evocative, thought-provoking and packed with a cast of personalities, for me this is definitely one of the best books I’ve read this year.
The Song of Achilles – This book is an achingly beautiful love story. I was super excited to read this and had been meaning too for a long time after many, many recommendations and having absolutely LOVED Circe. I’m glad to say that I wasn’t disappointed!